Transplant-Free Survival and Interventions at 6 Years in the SVR Trial

Circulation. 2018 May 22;137(21):2246-2253. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.117.029375. Epub 2018 Feb 1.


Background: In the SVR trial (Single Ventricle Reconstruction), 1-year transplant-free survival was better for the Norwood procedure with right ventricle-to-pulmonary artery shunt (RVPAS) compared with a modified Blalock-Taussig shunt in patients with hypoplastic left heart and related syndromes. At 6 years, we compared transplant-free survival and other outcomes between the groups.

Methods: Medical history was collected annually using medical record review, telephone interviews, and the death index. The cohort included 549 patients randomized and treated in the SVR trial.

Results: Transplant-free survival for the RVPAS versus modified Blalock-Taussig shunt groups did not differ at 6 years (64% versus 59%, P=0.25) or with all available follow-up of 7.1±1.6 years (log-rank P=0.13). The RVPAS versus modified Blalock-Taussig shunt treatment effect had nonproportional hazards (P=0.009); the hazard ratio (HR) for death or transplant favored the RVPAS before stage II surgery (HR, 0.66; 95% confidence interval, 0.48-0.92). The effect of shunt type on death or transplant was not statistically significant between stage II to Fontan surgery (HR, 1.36; 95% confidence interval, 0.86-2.17; P=0.17) or after the Fontan procedure (HR, 0.76; 95% confidence interval, 0.33-1.74; P=0.52). By 6 years, patients with RVPAS had a higher incidence of catheter interventions (0.38 versus 0.23/patient-year, P<0.001), primarily because of more interventions between the stage II and Fontan procedures (HR, 1.72; 95% confidence interval, 1.00-3.03). Complications did not differ by shunt type; by 6 years, 1 in 5 patients had had a thrombotic event, and 1 in 6 had had seizures.

Conclusions: By 6 years, the hazards of death or transplant and catheter interventions were not different between the RVPAS versus modified Blalock-Taussig shunt groups. Children assigned to the RVPAS group had 5% higher transplant-free survival, but the difference did not reach statistical significance, and they required more catheter interventions. Both treatment groups have accrued important complications.

Clinical trial registration: URL: Unique identifier: NCT00115934.

Keywords: Norwood procedure; cardiac surgery; congenital heart defect; congenital heart disease; single ventricle.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Blalock-Taussig Procedure* / adverse effects
  • Cardiac Catheterization / statistics & numerical data
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Fontan Procedure
  • Heart Transplantation
  • Heart Ventricles / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome / mortality
  • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome / surgery*
  • Infant
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Norwood Procedures
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Pulmonary Artery / surgery*
  • Seizures / etiology
  • Thrombosis / etiology

Associated data